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Confession - I have a cribbing horse

Bobbie is a great horse.  She's a reliable riding partner which is just what I need. She is wonderful with younger ones on her.  She isn't real affectionate because she's more dignified than that but she is warming up to me more everyday.  And she is pretty but she cribs like crazy and it's been driving me nuts!  In doing so she has been scraping the paint off the top rails of our new white fence. This had to stop.

For those of you who don't know, cribbing is when a horse places their top teeth on something, arches their neck and sucks air in.  It is also called wind sucking.  Apparently it gives them a little high.  It looks utterly ridiculous and sounds something like a burp!  We noticed she did this a few times before we brought her home but she was always kept in a pen or stall and pasture is supposed to help a lot.  We have pasture grass that horses dream of and it seemed to improve for a while.  Then she was back at it.  Stress of Red being introduced to the herd sent her on a cribbing binge.  It was time to take action.

It's not too noticable, I guess.
So I bought a cribbing collar.  It's the Miracle Collar by Weaver and made of sturdy leather.  And it works!  She can't do it!  Finally she has given up and stopped testing it out.

That little white belly spot makes Bobbie a Paint.  Cute, huh?

I feel bad for her though.  I mean it looks - well - embarassing.  It's like she is wearing a smoking patch on her forehead for everyone to see.  And the worst part is, I'll have to get used to it because the urge apparently doesn't go away after a while.  I'm going to keep my fingers crossed though.  At least it is the same color as her pretty coat.  She is wanting petting more often now which I love.  Either she needs comforting or she's just thinking I will take it off.

And now what is she doing?  Rubbing the collar on the fence!  I wonder which is worse.  Cribbing or not, she is still a great horse!


  1. Wow, I followed you here from Punkin's Patch. I LOVE your blog. And your animals. You definitely need some sheep though. Definitely.

  2. Welcome, Heather! You are right. We definitely need some Jacob's sheep, but there are none to be found around here. Or I would take a milking goat. We need something that Baaa's.

  3. Ahhh, poor Bobbie. Maybe when she gets more used to Red, she will be more content and not feel the need to do it. I sure am learning a lot about farm life from your blog. Warren knew all about cribbing, but I had never heard anything about it before.

  4. Interesting here in the UK we know it as windsucking; what we call cribbing/crib bitin is when the horse actually chews/bites the wood of the fence/stable door.
    No air is sucked in with cribbing.

    I have to say recently found your blog and enjoy reading it :)

  5. Mich,
    Welcome! I had a crib bitin baby boy! But Bobbie doesn't do that. Since we are new to horses maybe I am mistaken in calling it cribbing. I do think it is used as a generalized term for those kinds of habits here in the US but maybe not.
    Glad you are enjoying the blog.

  6. No Kim you have it right, in the US we call it cribbing. However, usually with the sucking they do get pieces of wood. We had a cribbing horse for years, the wood fence was a mess and falling down all the time because he was destroying it cribbing. He did much better in a wire fence because there was no wood to crib on. It's a terrible habit they pick up because they are bored (usually when they are young and in a pen all the time). Although you might have figured that out already! I hope the collar continues to work!

  7. My quarter horse was a cribber! You are right - it does sound like burping! And you're right about how the Miracle Collar blends in with Bobbie's coat. My horse was a Palomino, so the Miracle Collar was really noticeable against his golden coat.


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